We have a strong team of very experienced, talented and patient music professionals to mentor, teach and lead members in "Learning to Play."


Music Director and Conductor

Brent Rowan is the founding director of both the Guelph Youth Jazz Ensemble and the New Horizons Band for Guelph. Brent has taught in the Community Music Program at Wilfrid Laurier University and jazz saxophone and the jazz ensemble at the University of Guelph. He is also a clinician and adjudicator at music camps and festivals throughout southern Ontario, specializing in saxophone and improvisation concepts.

He is a professional community musician. As a saxophonist, Brent performs in a wide variety of musical collaborations; including 2009 and 2015 Juno Nominated Eccodek, Big Bands, smaller jazz combos, and creative music ensembles. Brent has performed and recorded all across Canada, the UK and Germany, at music festivals in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and London England to name a few. He has released three recordings of his own compositions; “It’s About Time” in 2006, “IZ” in 2012 and “Where is Local” in 2016. Brent composes and arranges music for many of the groups he directs.

Brent holds a Master of Arts in Critical Studies in Improvisation, from the University of Guelph 2021, a Master of Arts in Community Music, from Wilfrid Laurier University 2015, a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance from Humber College 2005 and a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo 1996. Brent is currently a PHD candidate in Critical Studies in Improvisation at the University of Guelph.


Donna Dupuy has worked as a music educator for 30 years, teaching at the university, high school, and middle school levels in both Canada and the United States. Donna decided to work a bit closer to home (Belwood) after spending six years as the Head of Education and band director with the New Horizons Band of Toronto. 

Donna graduated from the University of North Texas with Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees and is currently pursuing her MBA at the Edinburgh Business School.  Donna is a bassoonist and moonlights on flute.  She has performed with the San Angelo Symphony and the University of North Texas Faculty Winds and has a passion for woodwind quintet music and anything by Aaron Copland. 

Donna's random musical interests include listening to loud 80s rock in her car, and trying to identify the make and model of bassoons and cymbals by ear from recordings. Donna is currently the Learning and Development Manager for the Duke of Edinburgh's International Award Foundation and also moonlights as a lifeguard at the pool in Fergus and teaches aquatic leadership all over Central Ontario. In her spare time (yes there is some!) she loves gardening, reading and is a passionate knitter. Donna has one son, one beagle and only drives a stick shift.

Conductor / Brass Mentor

Andrew Cherry graduated with a Honours Bachelor degree in Music from McMaster University and a Bachelor degree of Education from Brock University. Upon graduating he started his 31 year music education teaching career in Port Elgin.

In 1981 Andrew and his family moved to Guelph after being hired by the Upper Grand District School Board to teach vocal and instrumental music in the elementary panel. In 1997 he was transferred  to John F. Ross Collegiate where again he taught instrumental music . At his time at J.F. Ross he conducted the Junior and Senior Concert Bands as well as the Jazz Band.

Soon after retirement he joined the staff of New Horizons Guelph to instruct and conduct the Green, Red, and Blue bands and has been leading the brass ensemble. Andrew has really enjoyed his time in New Horizons and believes that music education has many benefits for all ages.

His favourite day of the week is Wednesday when he gets to play tombone in the New Horizons Little Big Band.

Conductor / Woodwind Mentor

Jennifer Rodrigues holds a Masters Degree in Flute Performance and Literature from The University of Western Ontario and an Honours Bachelor of Music in Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University.

She has performed with Stratford Symphony and the KW Chamber Orchestra and a variety of pit orchestras including Drayton Entertainment, Stratford Festival, K-W Musical Productions, and Royal City Musical Productions. Her conducting credits include Musical Director of Les Miserables, 42nd Street, and Performing Arts Summer School productions with WCDSB and Singin’ in the Rain, Joseph, Fiddler on the Roof, The Wizard of Oz (RCMPI), Into the Woods (KWMP) .  She is one of the founding members of the New Berlin Chamber Ensemble, a woodwind quartet which has toured in Ontario, Alberta and Saskatchewan and appeared on TVO’s Studio 2 and CBC Radio.

Jennifer was an educator with WCDSB for 31 years, working extensively with Secondary Band programs and as Arts Consultant for the Board. She has been a clinician for OMEA and developed curriculum for the province.